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It's that time of year.
After what will go down as one of the coldest, messiest winters in New England history, the weather gods are finally smiling on these parts again.
In addition to signaling a brief respite in duck shoe wearing (to be resumed during the next rain) and the return of the Tufted Tit Mouse from its winter hospices in South America, the changing weather conditions mean that attending a Harvard sporting event is more convenient.
No longer does connecting with your favorite squad entail a 30-minute (45-minute if you live in the Quad) trudge through knee-high snow banks to watch a game in a stuffy gym or arena. Now, all school spirit entails is a brisk bike ride, jog or power walk across the river for a breezy afternoon in the sun. You even get a tan in the process.
If that doesn't convince you, then maybe the excitement potential of some of the local events will.
Take a gander at this weekend's line-up.
Baseball (Solidier's Field): The Crimson will face Columbia this afternoon in a doubleheader and then will take on Penn tomorrow for two.
Neither of the doubleheaders will have any consequence for Harvard's place within the Red Rolfe division of the Ivy League as both opponents are in the Lou Gehrig division, but they both promise to be good games.
Penn (12-6) will pose the greater challenge, as the Lions are nothing short of dismal this season (6-13). But hey, the way things have been going up-and-down this season for the Crimson (5-8--please see related story, this page), anything can happen.
Softball (Soldier's Field): OK, OK, so the Crimson softballers aren't having the greatest season (5-9 overall). Still, their doubleheaders against Maine today and Vermont will make a good study break for two reasons.
First, the Crimson is improving. The term beat Rhode Island College (yes, College, but we're talking baby steps here) convincingly in two games Thursday night, 10-1 and 11-3, a performance much, much more promising than its performances on its trip to Hawaii over Spring Break.
And second, neither Maine nor Vermont is in the Ivy League. Thus, even if (as is probably likely) the Crimson get beaten by one of those solid programs, it will be of little consequence.
Women's Tennis (Beren Tennis Courts): Maybe the real gem this weekend. Granted, tennis isn't exactly known for being a great spectator sport, but these players may be the exception.
The Crimson women's net team is one of three national caliber Crimson sports teams this season--along with women's and men's lacrosse. The team is rated in the top 20 and features one of the top players in the country in junior number-one singles player Jill Brenner.
This weekend the team, picked to finish first in the league, will be seeking revenge against two top-notch league teams,
Penn and Columbia. Penn beat the Crimson in the fall, while Columbia toppled Harvard last spring.
The games will be key if the team's league title hopes are to be kept alive.
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